When I first went to Africa, I headed straight to the home of Karen Blixen, author of Out of Africa and one of the world’s better storytellers. Daisy Rothschild (seen here at the Giraffe Manor) became a neighbor, as did Beryl Markham, author of West With the Night.
My good luck was to see this terrain in the company of local experts. I searched for fossils alongside Richard and Meave Leakey On location with filmmakers Alan and Joan Root, I learned the patience required for capturing wildlife behavior on film. One Christmas was spent with Cynthia Moss at her research camp near Mt. Kilimanjaro. Elephants came into focus again with Iain and Oria Douglas-Hamilton. Kuki Gallmann who wrote I Dreamed of Africa was my guide to Laikipia. Roland Purcell and Richard Bonham welcomed me to their camps in Katavi and the Selous. Dr. Laurie Marker introduced me to her world of cheetahs in Namibia, and with Bruce Patterson, I tracked descendants of The Man-Eaters of Tsavo.
I spent New Year’s Eve on the Tusitiri Dhow, and marked my birthday by adopting an orphan elephant at Sheldrick Wildlife Trust. My last trip to Africa was my 32nd. But it won’t be my last.